29 votes

Why Is There a 'Gaming Disorder' But No 'Smartphone Disorder?'

19 comments

  1. [2]
    Mathsia
    Link
    That's good because I play an unhealthy amount of chess. Like I have 6 books and play/study for over 12 hours a day if I have nothing on that day, Video game addiction seems a bit bogus if I don't...

    If you play a lot of chess or Settlers of Catan on a card table in the den, don’t worry, you’re fine—according to who,

    That's good because I play an unhealthy amount of chess. Like I have 6 books and play/study for over 12 hours a day if I have nothing on that day, Video game addiction seems a bit bogus if I don't have anything wrong with me with those kind of hours.

    This is an excellent article btw I'd recommend reading the whole thing.

    11 votes
    1. acr
      Link Parent
      I was playing chess non stop for a while. I have been taking a little break. i was studying and playing and it was eating up a lot of my down time. Fun though.

      I was playing chess non stop for a while. I have been taking a little break. i was studying and playing and it was eating up a lot of my down time. Fun though.

      3 votes
  2. [3]
    Catt
    Link
    So true. Let's add some protection against the casino-like mechanisms we're seeing in games and apps.

    Forget the choice between gaming disorder and smartphone disorder, maybe it’s productive to think of both, in part at least, as an invitation to pursue better consumer rights and protections rather than to proliferate more mental disorders.

    So true. Let's add some protection against the casino-like mechanisms we're seeing in games and apps.

    10 votes
    1. Gaywallet
      Link Parent
      Europe's already way ahead of the rest of the world on this one. I'm personally hoping that they can force us to comply by passing overarching laws like the GDPR to outlaw stuff like paid lootboxes.

      Europe's already way ahead of the rest of the world on this one.

      I'm personally hoping that they can force us to comply by passing overarching laws like the GDPR to outlaw stuff like paid lootboxes.

      11 votes
    2. nil-admirari
      Link Parent
      BINGO. By very deliberate design some of these activities specifically target the activity/pleasure mechanisms in the brain. These are manipulations that are applied throughout the world of...

      Let's add some protection against the casino-like mechanisms we're seeing in games and apps.

      BINGO. By very deliberate design some of these activities specifically target the activity/pleasure mechanisms in the brain. These are manipulations that are applied throughout the world of marketing, digital platforms are able to finely tailor these psychological triggers. Physical stores use psychological techniques that target pleasure centers with use of sounds, odors, visual cues but those influences are highly limited and crude by comparison. Some people are more susceptible to these cues than others but that doesn't make it a 'disorder'.

      Smartphones are tools like computers are and can't be compared to 'gaming' as individuals use of them are as varied as the individuals themselves.

      3 votes
  3. [7]
    Gaywallet
    Link
    We've been seeing in more recent releases of the DSM that they are providing "guidelines" for entire categories. For example, in an excerpt about changes to this section in the DSM-V, they state...

    We've been seeing in more recent releases of the DSM that they are providing "guidelines" for entire categories. For example, in an excerpt about changes to this section in the DSM-V, they state the following:

    Each specific substance (other than caffeine, which cannot be diagnosed as a substance use disorder) is addressed as a separate use disorder (e.g., alcohol use disorder, stimulant use disorder, etc.), but nearly all substances are diagnosed based on the same overarching criteria. In this overarching disorder, the criteria have not only been combined, but strengthened.

    If you take a look at this particular disorder in the DSM-5, you'll find generic criteria such as

    Important social, occupational, or recreational activities are given up or reduced because of substance use.

    I suspect that we will see similar "grouping" of addictive disorders that aren't really "substance" based with specific call-outs for highly visible addictions such as gambling, gaming, electronics, etc. as they may have distinct features that are important to call out (disregard for personal finances when it comes to gambling, for example).

    7 votes
    1. [6]
      apoctr
      Link Parent
      Huh. Why is caffeine explicitly excluded from being a substance use disorder?

      Huh. Why is caffeine explicitly excluded from being a substance use disorder?

      2 votes
      1. [5]
        Gaywallet
        Link Parent
        Caffeine withdrawal is in the DSM-5 but caffeine use disorder is still a "condition for further study". It's not excluded, it just hasn't been included yet.

        Caffeine withdrawal is in the DSM-5 but caffeine use disorder is still a "condition for further study". It's not excluded, it just hasn't been included yet.

        5 votes
        1. PlatoLake
          Link Parent
          I went through caffeine withdrawal one time as a 15 yr old. Not a fun experience at all.

          I went through caffeine withdrawal one time as a 15 yr old. Not a fun experience at all.

          2 votes
        2. apoctr
          Link Parent
          Ah, interesting. Cheers :)

          Ah, interesting. Cheers :)

          1 vote
        3. [2]
          EngiNerd
          Link Parent
          I'm sure it varies by people but I've gone from drinking as much as pot+ of coffee a day to as little as nothing a day and have varied in between all without any real withdrawal symptoms (for...

          I'm sure it varies by people but I've gone from drinking as much as pot+ of coffee a day to as little as nothing a day and have varied in between all without any real withdrawal symptoms (for instance right now I drink 2 double-shots of espresso a day Mon-Fri; but I can skip coffee on Sat and Sun without any side-effects)

          It would be really neat if we understood caffeine dependency and why some people can use caffeine regularly and quite on a dimes notice and why others have to go through a couple days of feeling like shit to get off caffeine.

          1 vote
          1. Gaywallet
            Link Parent
            We have some understanding of this already, but it's a complex question to answer. Many factors go into whether someone has withdrawal symptoms from a particular drug. I expect one day soon we'll...

            We have some understanding of this already, but it's a complex question to answer. Many factors go into whether someone has withdrawal symptoms from a particular drug. I expect one day soon we'll have the ability to say that someone is likely or unlikely to show addictive tendencies towards certain drugs and likely or unlikely to experience mild, moderate, or severe withdrawal... but anything much more specific than that might take some time to develop.

  4. DanBC
    Link
    This isn't a very good article. No, this is cobblers. Depression isn't a single illness caused by a mental defect. Depression is a complex set of disorders, many of which are caused by complex...

    This isn't a very good article.

    but that the public is so willing to assume negative behaviors are the result of individual mental defects, rather than more complex social, political, and economic factors.

    No, this is cobblers. Depression isn't a single illness caused by a mental defect. Depression is a complex set of disorders, many of which are caused by complex social, political, and economic factors. No-one credible pushes the "brain chemistry" hypothesis, and all strategies that talk about mental ill health need to show that they're aware of the wider determinants of health. And this is particularly true of all the substance misuse disorders. There are genetic predispositions, there are co-morbitities, but no-one would treat an alcohol addiction without looking at the complex social and economic factors for that patient, and the wider political factors for their group of patients. Mental Health treatment even has jargon for this: Bio-psycho-social: the biological, the psychological, and the social factors that contribute to illness.

    The international health community has decided that if you play video games like Fortnite or World of Warcraft a lot, you might suffer from a mental-health issue:

    Not really. They've said that if you play games a lot, and you experience profound impairment across a rnage of things as a result, but you keep on playing even though you're aware that you're suffering, then you may have a disorder.

    We have a gaming disorder because people have literally died because of their gaming misuse. Find me someone who died playing Catan and we can talk about why board games aren't yet seen as having this disorder potential.

    This kind of article happens a lot with medicine.

    3 votes
  5. [5]
    chocolate
    Link
    Because gaming is a major threat to the media.

    Because gaming is a major threat to the media.

    1 vote
    1. [4]
      tvfj
      Link Parent
      ... How?

      ... How?

      2 votes
      1. [3]
        chocolate
        Link Parent
        It takes away eyeballs and dollars.

        It takes away eyeballs and dollars.

        1 vote
        1. [2]
          TrialAndFailure
          Link Parent
          In that case, wouldn't the same be true for books, television, online videos, board games, and going outside?

          In that case, wouldn't the same be true for books, television, online videos, board games, and going outside?

          1. chocolate
            Link Parent
            If board games were a substantial threat, there would definitely be a moral panic. As for books / tv / video, they are vectors, not competition, and often owned by the same company.

            If board games were a substantial threat, there would definitely be a moral panic. As for books / tv / video, they are vectors, not competition, and often owned by the same company.

  6. PlatoLake
    Link
    Could it be because cell phone use hasn't been ubiquitous until the past ~10 years (if that). While video games have been around since the 70s?

    Could it be because cell phone use hasn't been ubiquitous until the past ~10 years (if that). While video games have been around since the 70s?